All-new Volkswagen Golf arrives in December

The all-new Golf, which goes on sale in Ireland in December, will have a starting price of €19,995 for the 'Trendline' three-door 1.2 TSI (petrol ) and €22,695 for the 'Trendline' 1.6 TDI (diesel ) three-door, writes Padraic Deane.

Volkswagen say that the new car is lighter, safer, more advanced, more spacious, more efficient and better equipped than previous generations of Europe’s best-seller. And there have been over 29 million Golfs sold.

The new 1.6-litre TDI 105 bhp engine will have CO2 emissions of just 99g/km, which is expected to be just within the top segment of four in Band A, which will in turn influence vehicle registration tax (VRT ) and road tax rates. Volkswagen's new price is based on the proposed new VRT rates revealed exclusively in the Auto Trade Journal and subsequently in the Irish Independent early last month.

From launch, the Golf will be available in Ireland in three trim levels: Trendline, Comfortline, and Highline. It will also come with a choice of three petrol and two diesel engines. The GTD, GTI and BlueMotion models will join the line-up in 2013.

The petrol engine range starts with a four-cylinder 1.2-litre TSI unit producing 85 bhp, rising via a 1.2-litre TSI 105 bhp up to the all-new 1.4-litre TSI 140 bhp engine with Active Cylinder Technology. This helps to create an extremely efficient engine capable of 4.7 l/100km (combined cycle ) and 109 g/km thanks to the ability to deactivate the central two cylinders under light loads. This makes it 23% more efficient than the equivalent engine in the previous version of the Golf.

The two diesel engines at launch are a 1.6-litre TDI, 105 bhp, and a new 2.0-litre TDI, 150 bhp, unit. Both feature the latest common rail diesel technology for maximum efficiency. All new Golf models – both diesel and petrol – come with a Stop/Start system as standard, along with battery regeneration. A 90 bhp diesel will follow next spring, as will the new Golf BlueMotion with a 1.6-litre 110 Bhp TDI from the newly developed engine series.

Gearboxes are a mixture of five- and six-speed manuals, and six- and seven-speed DSG units, depending on the engines’ power and torque outputs.

A Volkswagen Ireland spokeswoman says that standard specification levels build on those of the outgoing Golf, bringing new items of luxury and technology to the class.

All Golf models come with seven airbags, including a driver’s knee airbag, five three-point seatbelts, ABS with ESP, XDS electronic differential lock and Isofix preparation for two rear child seats.

On Trendline models, the standard Composition Media system includes a five-inch colour touchscreen, FM/AM radio as well as eight speakers (front and rear ) and a CD drive (MP3 compatible ). The CD drive is located in the glovebox along with the SD card slot. Also standard is ‘Climatic’ semi-automatic air conditioning and an electronic parking brake, among a host of other features.

Moving up from Trendline to Comfortline trim brings an outstanding range of features, including Cruise Control, Bluetooth phone connectivity, Radio Composition Media which has a 5.8 inch touch screen display which responds to wiping and zooming gestures, and there is access to ‘Phone’ and ‘Voice’ commands. There are USB and aux-in interfaces integrated into a separate compartment in the centre console in front of the gearshifter. On the outside, 15” Lyon alloy wheels come as standard on Comfortline models.

From the outside, the Highline model can be recognised by its 16” ‘Dover’ alloy wheels, front fog lights, deep red tail-light clusters, black radiator grille with chrome mouldings and electrically folding exterior mirrors. Inside, the Highline gets a three-spoke leather multifunction steering wheel, sports front seats and Piano Black Mesh inserts for the centre console.

Optional equipment includes high beam assist, lane assist, park assist (which is able to parallel-park the Golf in spaces only 80 cm longer than the car itself, in addition to providing automatic parking ), ACC adaptive cruise control and a rear-view camera.

Drivers can also select from a choice of alternative alloy wheels up to 18 inches in diameter, bi-xenon headlights, ‘Vienna’ leather upholstery (optionally with 12-way electrically adjustable front seats ), 2-Zone climate control, the Discover Pro navigation system with eight-inch colour touchscreen, keyless entry and a panoramic sunroof, among other options.

Volkswagen Ireland say that their dealers will start taking orders for the new Golf from mid to late October, with first deliveries due in mid-December. The company also says that it will offer attractive finance rates will be available from Volkswagen Bank, with hire purchase rates of just 4.9 per cent available on new Golf and PCP (Personal Contract Plan ) rates from €239 per month including delivery charges.

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